Thursday, February 18, 2010

Experiment #3 Make your own geode.

`We have had this kit kicking around for a while and OLM's Science Fair 2010 gave us the little nudge we needed to get it going.
The first thing we needed to do was to create seed crystals. These will be used to form the crystals in the geode shell that we will make in about 5 days.
We needed to measure an accurate amount of water and crystal forming powder to create a solution.
 After we did that we boiled our water and poured it in our pre measured crystal powder in a storing and mixing container.
We had to mix for a long while to ensure dilution. Then we had to let it cool and start to form for two hours with the top on.
 After the two hours we removed the top, sprinkled in some clumps of powder and some of the loose powder.
 We now must be patient and let it sit undisturbed for 5 days. The water needs to evaporate and create our seed crystals so we can move on to the next step.
After waiting a week, we poured off the solution to reveal our seed crystals.
We let them dry out for about 3 days and we were ready.
They are quite pretty just as they are.
Next we had to cast our geode shell.
Basically it's a gypsum mix and you mix with 9 tablespoons of water, after it thickens, you spread around the mold at your desired thickness.
Once it began to set, we pushed our seed crystals into the plaster.
We tried to fill up what we could, so we could have a nice geode. After it dried up, we made another batch of the liquid, the same that made our seed crystals, and filled our geode.
We covered it with foil, and let it sit for two days covered. Then we uncovered it and let it sit for an additional 4 days.
This was our final result.

We were not very impressed.
I mean it's ok.
 Kind of cool.
We all agree that the seed crystals are where it's at. So if we did this again we would just make a huge batch of seed crystals and break it large pieces.
Not a disappointing experiment, just one where you learn how to do the next one better!


Hello There! said...

Looks like a lot of fun. The boys and I are starting to use some kits just for fun activities. They get so excited when it is science time!

Phyllis said...

Science experiments are often like that. Now that I am doing the same experiments with my littles that I did with my olders, I can do them better now that I have learned from my past mistakes.

varunner said...

Looks pretty cool! Well do learn how to make it better the next time with each one of these sorts of experiments. I guess it's all part of the scientific process ;-)